Watalappan is a traditional pudding served at the weddings, festivals and celebrations in Sri Lanka. It is one of the favourite desserts of every Sri Lankans. The main ingredient used for making this is Kithul jaggery. This is a contribution of Sri Lankan Moors (Muslims) to the Ceylonese cuisine.
When I speak about Watalappan, I certainly have to mention these two people, Uvais and Najeema. My neighbours and family friends back in my hometown. Uvais is a good looking and a short bearded man of 40’s with a Taqiyah (Prayer Cap used by the Muslims) all the time on his head. When the month of Ramadan falls, it used to be a celebration for me either when I lived there. On the day of Ramadan, they used to arrange for the Lunch or Dinner feast for all of us. His wife Najeema one of the best cooks whom I know after my mother (except for Watalappan). She prepares the best meat curries, ghee biscuits and mascot halwa. At the end of the feast, we were served with this aromatic and nut-rich Watalappans. None of the meal parties ended without Watalappan. I can even remember those days when I used to finish the entire portion of this dessert served for all in my family. It was too rich in flavours and made me drooling. After moving to India unfortunately, I have never got a chance to taste the same again.
This Ramadan month again reminded me of this delicious dessert prepared at Uvais’s place, as one of my blog followers has asked for the Watalappan recipe. Here is a classical Watalappan recipe by me. The same is also prepared in the Indian state Kerala, in the name Kinnathappam.
- Coconut Milk - 300 ml
- Kithul Jaggery - 250 gm
- Eggs - 06 Nos
- Cardamom Powder - 1/2 tablespoon
- Cinnamon Powder - 1/2 tablespoon
- Pistachio - 08 Nos
- Cashew - 06 Nos
- Raisins - 10 Nos
- Dates - 05 Nos
- Grate the jaggery and keep aside.
- Crack the eggs and add them in a big bowl. Beat the eggs until frothy.
- In a blender add the beaten eggs, coconut milk, grated jaggery, cardamom powder and cinnamon powder.
- Blend until it becomes fluffy without any lumps.
- Strain the mixture using a cloth or strainer and pour into a steaming bowl.
- Finely chop the pistachio, cashew, raisins and sparkle half of it on the mixture.
- Cover it with foil/Lid and steam it for 30 mins in a steamer/pressure cooker on a medium flame.
- Turn off the flame once it is cooked. Sparkle the remaining chopped nuts & dates and serve it chilled.
Use only Kithul jaggery as palm jaggery or sugar doesn’t give you the authentic flavour. It is not compulsory to add the pistachio or cashews. The dessert tastes so good even without them. The time required for steaming might differ. So keep checking until it is steamed well.